The meaning of social anthropology


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The meaning of social anthropology

  1. 1. The meaning of social anthropology Raymond FirthZELİHA UYURCAID 501 - Advanced Project Development in Industrial Design
  2. 2. The meaning of social anthropology The social anthropology intend to make a comparative analysis of how people behave or act in social circumstances.
  3. 3. The meaning of social anthropology • The problem that social anthropologist face: – That raw material is disappearing in due course. – Most are not evaporating but they have been changing the way of their lives that is the special work areas of social anthropologists. • For example, Head-hunting, cannibalism and human sacrifice had disappeared. Totemism, exogamy, polygamy and couvage have been modified.
  4. 4. The meaning of social anthropology • This loss or threaten for loss of tradition enforce the social anthropologist to adopt themselves in different ways. Such as; – The study of social impact and change, – Special problems of race relations, – Vanishing primitives, – The study of contemporary Western society, – How society and psyche meet in the field of personal development.
  5. 5. The meaning of social anthropology • Main work of social anthropologist in this article: – What social anthropologist studies – What methods social anthropologist uses – What result social anthropologist gets – How valid the result of studies
  6. 6. The meaning of social anthropology • Social anthropology studies human social process comparatively. • Life of animals and plants can be useful for drawing fundamentals of what life in a society must consist of in respect to social process. • Anthropological generalization about human society are collaborative not definitive.
  7. 7. The meaning of social anthropology • Sociology, psychology share its general field of work and History as well. – History, in a different way, has interest in social process, it is not personal events but supply documents in time perspective on society. Sociology, gives massive structure of concepts and data collected by observation of Western society. Psychology has interest in analyzing the social as in individual and classifying the individual act in types. • Where does social anthropologist involve? – its traditional role is regional complement to sociology. And historically, it studies process in society of people who are far from us in their lives and not familiar with us in their traditions.
  8. 8. The meaning of social anthropology • What anthropologists studies: – Social anthropologist never cut the touch with Western society. He studies family, kinship, magic, religion, mythology and morality. – The purpose of the anthropological researches is pay attention to general characteristic underlying all societies. The social anthropologist studies with customs of people to reveal the general questions about the nature of society and of social process. – Most anthropologist study at one time or among communities those are small. Study among the small groups also helps to understand or conceptualize of the society as a whole. Different from other social scientist, he is used to understand how people really do and behave in different social environment and try to find out common factor and variant in their conduct.
  9. 9. The meaning of social anthropology • What anthropologists studies: – In another perspective, social anthropologist has to put a clear line between basic social situations and a wide variety of human circumstances. • Philosophy, literature and social sciences try to observe the different kinds of human experiences and come to conclusion with their own characteristics. • Literature perform in imaginary way, philosophy in scepticism way and the social sciences perform in acceptance and analysis. So that, in particularly, social anthropology is comparative.
  10. 10. The meaning of social anthropology • Difficulties that social anthropologist faces – Firstly, social anthropologist seeks for the widest possible range of experience against foreigner background. Experience is must be meaningful to be susceptible of regularity. The aim of the social anthropology is to draw regularities from alien, obscure of experience express them in more general principle and tendencies of familiar. – The second difficulty is finding sufficient regularities among the conduct of the member of the group to generalize adequately. • Change of human society caused by technological and economic activities or etc. result in social difficulties and anthropologic problems because change has never been succeeded smoothly.
  11. 11. The meaning of social anthropology • Criticism, defense, either of activities or of value system behind them cannot be placed in social anthropology. They would be only factors in total situation that social anthropologist is concerned. • Provinces of Social Anthropologists: – Social anthropologist has wider province than small scale primitive and preliterate peasant culture. Most studies are related to those but boundaries are neither technological nor geographical. – American anthropologists has newly tendency to study on personality and character formation in civilized countries or communities in addition to primitives ones.
  12. 12. The meaning of social anthropology • Closeness to other Social sciences: – The anthropologist approach to study of contemporary civilization must be awareness of contribution of other social sciences to problems. – For example, American social scientists used the anthropologic methods to understand Irish rural life and collect the material
  13. 13. The meaning of social anthropology • Features that distinguishes the social anthropology from other disciplines. – Firstly, its intensive detailed characteristic for systematic observation is to examine the conduct of people in group relation. What people actually do is the concern area for anthropologist. – Secondly, it is holistic implication. Any particular item selected for observation is always regarding to its place in total phenomena in the life of human group. – Third characteristic is comparison that is given by social anthropologist for emphasis. Comparison is performed between items of behavior in different major social units and identification of the major scale unit, and items selection base on the abstraction.
  14. 14. The meaning of social anthropology • Validity of methods used by social anthropologist in terms of considering problems. – Problem of observation – Problem of assignment of meaning – Problem of expression
  15. 15. The meaning of social anthropology • Problem of observation – Social anthropologists should observe the environment of the human. He has to hear what people say, he has to see what people do. – Observer-effect is important for observation and his senses can give the correct data, interpretation. He has to put the intuitional comprehension, empathy, existential thinking a side and pay attention to the relevant field of observation – Memory-factor for reproduction of what is observed.
  16. 16. The meaning of social anthropology • Problem of assignment of meaning – In the study of behavior, he has to work by contextualization. If he understands the context adequately, he can understand the meaning of behavior. – Research is a process of learning and practicing new modes of personal behaviors. If he infers wrong scientific meaning, he gets practical difficulties. – Another aspect of the author to meaning problem is relevance. Meaning of item of behavior could be founded by contextualization and item selection is still questioning.
  17. 17. The meaning of social anthropology • Problem of expression – Expression of the result of the study is served by set of theoretical concepts in which scientific observation of phenomena and attribution of meaning to them can be done.
  18. 18. The meaning of social anthropology • Society, culture and community is most frequently used term in the description and the analyses of group of life of human beings. Each one expresses the idea of totality. – if society is considered as an organized set of individual with given way of life, so culture is that way of life. If, society is regarded as total of social relations, so culture is the content of those relations. – Community stresses space-time component and consist of recognition, derived from experiences and observation.
  19. 19. The meaning of social anthropology • In studying a field of social relations, notion of society and culture and community is being used and they can be distinguished by their structure, their function and the irorganization. – At the structure, the principles that their form depend on. From functional aspect, the way that they serve in given ends and from organization, directional activity which maintain their form and serves their ends. • The concept of social structure is a analytic tool designed to serve the anthropologists in understanding how human behave in their social life.
  20. 20. The meaning of social anthropology • Social structure: – must be regarded with the ordered relation of parts to a whole, with arrangement in which the elements of social life are linked together. – The concept of social structure is a analytic tool designed to serve the anthropologists in understanding how human behave in their social life. – Social structure might consist of critical or basic relationship from a class system based on the relation with soil. Other aspect author assumes, aspect of social structure increase through membership of kinds of persistent group, such as clans, castes secret societies.
  21. 21. The meaning of social anthropology • Social function: – means the relation between social action and the systems of which the action is a part, alternatively, as the result of social action. – From A.N. Whitehead point of view, function of a social action or relation is “concern” which action or relation has for all other elements in social system.
  22. 22. The meaning of social anthropology • Social organization: – Social organization generally is considered as same with social structure. Concept of organization is that people doing things with planned action. This is a social process, the arrangement of actions in sequence with conformity with selected social end. – There has to be some common significance for the group of people in the action. Significance need to be identical or similar for all them. Social organization put the diverse element into common relation together by degree of unification.
  23. 23. The meaning of social anthropology • Constant problem of Social Anthropolgy: – Time is also a factor to develop the implication decision and consequent action. A person can choose consciously or unconsciously what he will follow. This affects the future structure of society. Social structure is continuity principles of society but social organization is variation or change principle by ensure the evaluation of situation and entry of individual choice.